Jubilation and relief filled the air today (6 July 2019), as the UNESCO World Heritage Committee announced its decision at 4:40pm (local time Baku) at its 43rd session in Baku, Azerbaijan: the Erzgebirge/Krušnohoří Mining Region is now a World Heritage Site. After 20 years of hard work towards World Heritage status, we have finally achieved it. Over 800 years of mining in the Erzgebirge have forged a unique relationship between man and nature, producing a cross‑border mining cultural landscape of universal value.
The Erzgebirge/Krušnohoří Mining Region application, or the Verein Welterbe Montanregion Erzgebirge e.V. (World Heritage Association for the Erzgebirge Mining Region), was backed three administrative districts as well as 32 towns and communities. More than one thousand people were involved in this bottom-up project to date, from residents and association members to communities and ministry committees. The Tourismusverband Erzgebirge e.V. is proud to have been a partner in this process, representing members and supporting tourist organisations in the region.
There were 35 sites on the list of nominations this year. The UNESCO World Heritage Committee comprises selected representatives from 21 nations, who decide on the applications submitted. The Erzgebirge/Krušnohoří Mining Region is now on the World Heritage list, which has hitherto comprised 1,092 sites from 167 countries.
“The inclusion of the Erzgebirge/Krušnohoří Mining Region on the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites is an outstanding achievement for the whole area. I am delighted that years of hard work and collaboration on the road to World Heritage status have finally been honoured with this title,” said Ines Hanisch-Lupaschko, CEO of Tourismusverband Erzgebirge e.V. (Erzgebirge Tourism Association)
The extraordinary value and unique character of the mining region must be protected and preserved for future generations and every effort must be made to make sure that it is never forgotten. “Tourism can have a decisive impact in this respect; the new UNESCO World Heritage Site, with its 22 component parts across two countries, has the potential to connect and unite the entire Erzgebirge region.”